What’s your favorite comfort food? Mac and cheese or bean burritos? Jambalaya or fried Spam on white bread? Whatever it is, we often turn to it when we feel lost or besieged and need to remember a time when we felt at home and accepted. But what about the old mental and emotional habits we turn to when we feel threatened by some person or event? It seems odd to call them comfort, but they often are. What about the familiar comfort of fear? Of isolation? Of rage? Of ignorance? All of them slam and lock the door against strange people, ideas or invitations to change. Trying new foods, especially those way outside our cultural comfort zone, can be an exciting and occasionally tasty adventure. (Boiled cow’s tongue, anyone?) In the same way, daring action challenges the comfort of fear, real facts disrupt ignorance and compassionate resistance stands toe-to-toe with our familiar rage.
Mara Faulkner, OSB